Cauterets is a familiar name for those who were sucked in by the exciting 1989 Tour. In Paris it was Greg Lemond who was the victor, but with a tiny margin of only 8 seconds over Laurent Fignon. Indurain won the stage to Cauterets.
Traversing a rolling landscape riders head for the Côte de Loucrup, a 3rd category peak that’s crested with 48.5 kilometres. After visiting Côte de Bagnères-de-Bigorre (4th category) and Côte de Mauvez (3rd category) the foot of the Col d’Aspin is reached after 105 kilometres of racing. The climb totals 12 kilometres at 6.5% with kilometre 8 being steepst – 9.5%. The climb is labelled category 1.
Even more challenging is the Tourmalet. Located at an elevation of 2,115 metres the summit is reached 30 kilometres after cresting the Aspin. The climb itself is 17.1 kilometres at 7.3% with the opening kilometres being easiest. Bu starting at the seventh kilometre the grade doesn’t go under 8% with the tenth, twelfth and fifteenth kilometres being steepest at over 10%. The Col du Tourmalet is a hors category climb.
The arrival is in Cauterets after an irregular 6.4 kilometres climb. The average gradient is 5% and with 3 kilometres left a section at 10% is a perfect to attack. The Côte de Cauterets is labelled category 3.
As an arrival place Cauterets offers a sad story. In 1995 the Tour arrived in the village after a stage every cycling fan would like to erase from history, because Fabio Casartelli was killed earlier that day in the descent of the Col de Portet d’Aspet.
Race results/stage report, stage 11, Tour de France 2015.
Tour de France 2015 stage 11: Route maps, height profiles, and more
Click on the images to zoom